• Heather Moll

Ratafia Cakes in 2022

After my young helper didn't care for the last regency thing we baked (Georgian Chocolate Tart) because it wasn't sweet enough, I thought I had better find something he would like. Especially since he refused to eat the Regency Mac and Cheese because it didn't come from a box. So I searched through The Jane Austen Cookbook by Maggie Black and Deirdre Le Faye. This ratafia cake recipe was one of Mary Lloyd's--and it had plenty of sugar.


Once he was assured ratafia wasn't anything sneaky like a vegetable, my young helper was on board. The update of the recipe is:

  • 1 cup ground almonds

  • 2 egg whites

  • 1 teaspoon orange liqueur

  • 3/4 caster sugar (we had to use granulated)

Ratafia is made from wine or grape juice combined with brandy or other spirits and often flavored with almonds, fruit, or fruit kernels. These "cakes" are more like cookies and they're a lot like macaroons.




My helper was willing to set the oven to 350F but separating the eggs was not on his agenda. He turned on the mixer to beat the egg whites with the orange liqueur and he mixed the almond flour with the sugar, but that's as far as his interest went in making "the Jane Austen cookies."


I took over from there and folded the dry ingredients into the egg whites. I placed rounded teaspoons onto a silicon mat and baked them for 10 minutes.


They turned out well, but now for me they were a too sweet. My kid liked them, even though they had no chocolate. If I made them again, I would cut back on the sugar. It's the kind of thing that would be good after dinner with coffee or drinks.

What should my young helper and I make next? Something sweet or should we attempt something savory that he will absolutely not eat?

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